Friday, March 21, 2014

Matthew 26

Jesus reminded his disciples of his forthcoming suffering and crucifixion. Those who were plotting schemes against Jesus held a secret meeting at the house of the high priest, Caiaphas. In that meeting, they decided not to act in a haste during Passover, to avoid riots among people.

While at Bethany, a woman anointed Jesus with an expensive oil on his head, as he was reclining at a table. The disciples were indignant and griped at this waste. Jesus said to them, “Why are you bothering this woman? She has done a beautiful thing to me. The poor you will always have with you, but you will not always have me. When she poured this perfume on my body, she did it to prepare me for burial."

Meanwhile, Judas Iscariot approached the chief priests and agreed to betray Jesus for thirty pieces of silver.

Jesus picked a certain man's house to celebrate the Passover meal. During the Passover meal, he shared that one of his disciples will betray him. He said, "Truly I tell you, one of you will betray me.”

Judas asked him, “It isn’t me, is it, Rabbi?”

Jesus told Judas not to play games with him.
Matthew 26:26 - 28 While they were eating, Jesus took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take and eat; this is my body.” Then he took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.
Jesus prophesied that Peter will betray him tree times.

Later at the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.”

His disciples were sleeping while Jesus was going through agony. He rebuked his disciples for sleeping. Judas betrayed Jesus with a kiss. Jesus was arrested and brought to Caiaphas and the Sanhedrin. Among many false witnesses, one of them said that Jesus claimed he was able to destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days. Jesus kept silent throughout all these false allegations.

He told Caiaphas that he is indeed the Christ, and that Caiaphas will see the Son of Man sitting on the right hand of the Father, and coming in glory. Caiaphas tore his clothes and called it blasphemy. Then they spit in his face and struck him with their fists. Others slapped him and mocked him.

Peter denied knowing or having any association with Jesus three times, before the the cock crowed that morning. He then went out and cried bitterly, for saying so.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Matthew 25

In another parable, Jesus compared the kingdom of heaven like ten virgins (bridesmaids), who conducted the groom into the house with lamps. The groom was delayed, and five foolish virgins do not take sufficient oil with them. When the groom actually arrived, these five foolish virgins had gone off to buy some oil. By the time they returned, the doors were shut up against them, and they were denied entry.
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Jesus then narrated the parable of the bag of gold, which was about investment. A man going into a far away land distributed his wealth to his servants - few bags of gold, depending on their ability.
Matthew 25:16-18 The man who had received five bags of gold went at once and put his money to work and gained five bags more. So also, the one with two bags of gold gained two more. But the man who had received one bag went off, dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money.
After some time, the man returned from his journey. He complimented those who traded and invested the wealth and appreciated them being able to multiply it. In return, he was going to give them more responsibilities. The servant who buried his share in the ground was rebuked and asked to give his share to others who were able to multiply it.
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When the Son of Man comes in glory, nations will be separated like sheep and goats, and judged accordingly. Those of us, who feed and clothe the poor and sick will be at his right hand; those who did not will be reviled. What people did or did not do to the least of their brethren, they did to Jesus.
Matthew 25:34-36 “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’"
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Sunday, March 16, 2014

Matthew 24

Matthew writes about Jesus predicting the destruction of Jerusalem temple. At Mount Olive, his disciples asked him privately about the end times. He warned them about the appearances of false Messiahs, wars, pestilences, persecutions and false prophets who shall come to pass before the second coming.

Jesus advised them when they noticed the ‘abomination of desolation’ in the temple, alluding to the book of Daniel, they should flee to the mountains. The phrase "abomination of desolation" is found in three places in the Book of Daniel, all within the literary context of apocalyptic visions.

(1) Daniel 9:27
(2) Daniel 11:31
(3) Daniel 12:11

Matthew leads us to the study of Revelation.

There is going to be a great tribulation – a reference to the destruction of Jerusalem by Rome in 70 AD. Later, the Son of Man will return with honor and glory from heaven. This generation will not pass away till all things take place: heaven and earth shall pass away, but Jesus’ words will not.

Jesus said that His second coming will be when the world is as it was in the days of Noah – full of debauchery and sin. The second coming will be unexpected, and we must therefore live in a state of constant anticipation.
Matthew 24:36-41 “But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. Two men will be in the field; one will be taken and the other left. Two women will be grinding with a hand mill; one will be taken and the other left."
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Proverbs 16 Mar 2014

  1. While men make elaborate plans, God has the final word. 
  2. For our plans to take shape, submit our work to the Lord. 
  3. The only thing that deflects evil is the fear of God. 
  4. Better to be right and poor, than to be wrong and rich. 
  5. God cares about honesty at workplace - our business is His business. 
  6. Better to get wisdom than gold; get insight rather than silver.
  7. Bigger the ego, harder the fall. 
  8. Things work out when we trust in God. 
  9. True intelligence is a spring of fresh water, while fools sweat it out the hard way. 
  10. Appetite and hunger are incentives to work harder.